UMD Softball Heads to the Sunshine State for 10 games
The University of Minnesota Duluth Softball team kicked off its season in style with an 8-0 beat down against Nebraska-Kearney back on Feb 17.
Unfortunately for the Bulldogs, their momentum from the first game didn’t carry over as the club lost their next five, all by four runs or less.
Of the Bulldogs eight games played this year, five of them have been decided by two runs or less. UMD is 2-3 in those five games.
“It seems to be a trend that we started last season,” said UMD head Coach Jen Walter, “These players are very competitive and resilient and have the mindset that until the final out is made, we have a chance. Because of our success in coming from behind last year, they are confident in those situations and tend not to panic if they get down early.”
This resiliency is starting to come to fruition, as things seem to be trending in the right direction for UMD. The team took down a solid Emporia State team 4-3 and 4-2 in a double header last week in St. Cloud.
This is a good thing as the team looks to showcase their young talent over spring break in their annual trip to Clermont, Florida.
The team has fared well while playing in Florida. They boast a very impressive 16-4 record in their last two trips to there.
“It’s always nice to head south,” Walter said. “The spring trip is where most teams really come together. We are able to just focus on softball for 7 days. You can only practice in the field house so long before it just gets old.”
The Bulldogs graduated five seniors last year and have one on the 2017 roster, but that doesn’t mean the team is missing experience.
“I don’t really see us as lacking experience,” said Walter. “We have seven returning players that played significant innings for us last year, so it’s really a matter of finding the right combinations of freshmen to fill the other two to three spots.”
The team looks to build off its extremely strong of 36-16 campaign last season. However, unless you win it all, there is always room for improvement.
“Last year we got a taste of what it takes to compete at a high level having made it to the NCAA Regionals and they are driven to get back there again,” Walter said.
Photo from Alex Ganeev